Marilyn Singleton, MD: COVID-19 Spike Doesn't Warrant Another Shutdown



Former instructor at Johns Hopkins // member of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. MARILYN M. SINGLETON MD talks with JT:

The US recently hit 3 million documented Covid-19 cases. That sentence on its own can seem jarring, but it’s important for Americans to ingest COVID-19 statistics more holistically.

“If you focus exclusively on headlines, you’re not seeing the full picture. News of daily spikes are causing some businesses to have second thoughts on reopening but we’ve all seen the detrimental impacts of a lockdown. We need to be vigilant in our fight against the virus, but it’s not a binary choice between reopening and public health; we can have the best of both worlds,” says Dr. Singleton.

Hospitalization: Despite the rise in cases, COVID-19 patients fill only 8 percent of the available hospital beds. Death Rate: Revised CDC estimates place the COVID-19 mortality rate at 0.4 percent—considerably less than the 3.4 percent death rate that was initially reported by the World Health Organization.

Mental Health Toll: A Kaiser Family Foundation survey in late May found that 39 percent of adults “feel that worry and stress related to” COVID-19 has had a negative impact on their mental health and about half have deferred seeking medical care.

Health Care Disruptions: Some 80,000 diagnoses of five common cancers may be missed or delayed because of disruptions to health care caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The CDC also attributes to COVID-19 up to 39 percent excess deaths from delayed treatment for renal failure, diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer disease and dementia.

Photo: Getty Images

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